Media Liability Insurance

What is Media Liability Insurance?

Media Liability insurance is a type of professional, or errors & omissions coverage originally designed for media-related firms such as publishers, broadcasters, advertising agencies and movie producers.  However, due to the rapidly evolving technology sector where innovations to existing creative material happen on a daily basis, Media liability has become an increasing area of on-going litigation concern, and can pose a very real threat to many technology firms.  Media liability insurance coverage provides broad coverage to protect against claims or suits for damages resulting from unauthorized use of someone else’s copyrighted or trademarked intellectual property.  It also covers unauthorized use of any advertising material or any slogan or title of others, and exposures resulting from plagiarism.

Do I need Media Liability Insurance if I’m not a marketer or advertiser?

Even if you advertise or market as part of your business services, Media Liability is still an exposure that companies fail to realize. Trademark and Copyright infringement can happen to non-media related firms, especially technology related companies. 


Claim Scenario:

An insured, XYZ, Inc. received a cease and desist infringing use letter from a law firm claiming that XYZ, Inc., which had been continuously engaged in business under the XYZ, Inc. service mark since at least 1983, had been infringing upon the law firm’s client trademark, XYX Corporation.  In furtherance of its ownership of the XYX mark, XYX Corporation had also registered its service mark with the US Patent and Trademark Office since 1990.  XYX Corporation claimed to also be in the same business as XYZ, Inc. and that continued use of their mark would cause significant harm to their goodwill and trademark rights.  The letter demanded that XYZ, Inc. cease and desist conducting business under the mark XYZ, and that it immediately initiate steps to rename the corporation, its products, and services, including rebranding its website.

Claim Scenario II:

An IT service firm placed advertisements on their website and on their direct mailings to announce a new service offered by one of their important partners.  The advertising contained material that a global competitor of their partner claimed it owned.  The competitor sued the IT service firm, contending that they were liable for damages caused by unauthorized use of the advertising material.

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Media Liability Claim Scenarios